What Is WAAP? And Why Do You Need It?
What Is WAAP? And Why Do You Need It?
What is WAAP?
Web application and API protection services (WAAP) are cloud-based security solutions specifically designed to protect web applications and APIs.
They are an evolution of previous cloud web application firewall (WAF) services, offering broader and deeper security.
Why do you need WAAP?
Web applications and APIs are the workhorses of today’s internet environment.
Web applications are programs that use a web browser, while an API is a piece of software that allows applications to communicate and interact with one another.
“An application programming interface, or API, enables companies to open up their applications’ data and functionality to external third-party developers, business partners, and internal departments within their companies,” explains U.S. tech giant IBM. “This allows services and products to communicate with each other and leverage each other’s data and functionality through a documented interface.”
In other words, pretty much everything we use on an internet-connected device uses them. And as the world shifts everything online, they are becoming ever more ubiquitous.
APIs in particular have come into common use. A survey by one API security company found that customer API call rates skyrocketed over 140% in six months of 2021, a number that will only increase with the growth of e-commerce, the IoT, cloud computing, SaaS, and the like.
APIs are great. Easy to develop and easy to deploy, they have virtually revolutionized how things get done online. Among other things, they make it much easier for companies to automate and coworkers to collaborate, enabling communication between disconnected applications.
However, being so ubiquitous and easy to use comes with a downside — security.
This is particularly the case since many companies and organizations rush code into production knowing full well they are vulnerable. Though APIs are supposedly secure by design as they facilitate abstraction between consumer and provider, they are still vulnerable to attack.
But even if APIs are securely written, their very ubiquity makes them a target. Indeed, many companies have no idea even how many APIs they use. The wide-scale deployment of APIs makes them especially prone to common web application vulnerabilities, including SQL injections and DDoS attacks.
Unsurprisingly, therefore, almost half of the enterprises experienced API issues in 2021 that led to privacy concerns and data loss. Some of the world’s largest companies, including Google, Twitter, Facebook, and Starbucks experienced API-originated attacks, as did even official COVID-19 tracing apps in several countries.
In fact, APIs are on pace to overtake web applications as the most common attack vector in 2022.
What does WAAP do?
Sitting on the outer edge of a network, WAAP analyzes incoming traffic, focusing only on the application layer.
WAAP typically includes four core features: WAF, DDoS protection, bot management and API protection.
More specifically, they embrace:
- Next-Generation Web Application Firewall (Next-Gen WAF): These are the latest evolution in firewall technology, protecting against a much wider range of attacks at the application layer.
- DDoS protection: Though Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks are almost the oldest trick in the attacker’s book, they continue to evolve. WAAP solutions typically protect against DDoS attacks at the network and application layers, ensuring that your APIs and web applications are always available.
- Bot management: There are plenty of good bots out there, but there are also lots of malicious ones engaged in attacks on web applications, including credential stuffing and scraping. WAAP identifies malicious bots and blocks them from accessing your applications.
- API protection and microservices: WAAPs protect your entire web presence, not just your web applications, by creating micro perimeter around individual services. This stops unauthorized access to your APIs.
WAAPs typically include Runtime Application Self-Protection (RASP) as well. This service uses runtime instrumentation to detect and block computer attacks by taking advantage of information from inside the running software itself.
These features make them much more effective than other security solutions, including traditional firewalls.
Most WAAP solutions are offered through the cloud, making them highly scalable.
Cloubric WAF+: Full spectrum protection for your online presence
Trusted by banks and governments, Cloudbric WAF+ is a full-spectrum web security solution that prevents attacks. WAF+ utilizes patented AI algorithms, perfecting over 20 years of security R&D experience.
Cloudbric WAF+ is a fully managed, smart web security service to protect any business or organization from web threats.